Dec 26, 2012 6:00am PST
removed himself from these discussions. harry reid, president obama, and a little bit of mitch mcconnell. what is possible of making a deal? >> the ball seems to be in mitch mcconnell's court. does he filibuster anything that harry reid ends up making with president obama? we have a paired down legislation extending for income below $250,000 and doing something with unemployment insurance that you were talking about? the question is a senate filibuster, democrats need 60 votes and republican votes, mcconnell ends up filibustering and will there be senators who support the legislation and blocking the filibuster. a lot of gymsmanship and republicans when you lock at the situation in the house and the inability to pass along the other things, they are on the verge of taking a lot of blame if they filibuster the legislation and the house doesn't act on it. >> and only democratic support developing here. how much is he going to agree with the president when he has the election in 2014? some folks don't want to appear in any way too close to president obama right now. >> let's move on in term
Dec 27, 2012 1:00pm PST
, was senator mitch mcconnell and here we have the majority leader in the senate, harry reid. let's listen in for a second. >> the house has reported by the press and we all know, one of the plans didn't have a name, it wasn't plan b. i don't know which plan it was because they've had a number over there. but this plan was to show the american people that the $250,000 ceiling on raising taxes wouldn't pass in the house. why didn't they have that vote? because it would have passed. they wanted to kill it. the speaker wanted to show everybody that it wouldn't pass the house. but he couldn't bring it up for vote because it wouldn't pass. republicans -- a myriad of republicans think it's the fair thing to do and of course every democrat would vote for that. the republican leader finds himself frustrated that the president has called on him to help address the fiscal cliff. he's upset because, quote, the phone never rang. he complains that i have not passed the resolution to pass the fiscal cliff but he's in error. we all know that in july of this year we passed in the senate the relief that wo
Dec 29, 2012 7:00am EST
tomorrow afternoon. host: both majority leader harry reid and mitch mcconnell both expressed optimism after the meeting with the president. what is the basis of their optimism? is this a sign we might be one step, two steps, through step closer to a deal? caller: it does appear we are a step closer to a deal. they are talking about doing is extraordinarily popular stuff. except for the big marquee item, which is letting taxes rise on the wealthy. the rest of the stuff they are looking at doing the stuff they do all the time. it is extending an expiring tax policies. they know the benefit businesses. extent college tuition credits. there are looking at protecting people from the alternative minimum tax. it is all very urgent stuff that needs to be done. there are only two remotely controversial pieces of this, that is what to do with the estate tax and to how to define the wealthy people whose taxes are going to go up. the rest of it is, basically protecting people from tax hikes. i guess extending unemployment benefits and sometimes controversial for the republicans. it appears to have agre
Dec 27, 2012 12:00pm EST
expressed by the then-director of the national intelligence mike mcconnell, the then-c.i.a. director michael hayden, the attorney general at the time, michael mukasey, as they discussed the consequences that we would have to deal with if we continued not to move forward and put this act back in place. the agreement we reached balanced the concerns of those who feared that the national security agency had overreached with the other balance was the ongoing authority that the intelligence community needed to protect the country. that agreement is before us again to be reauthorized for another five years. the fisa amendments act protects individuals in the united states from so-called reverse targeting. it's one of the concerns people had five years ago. this would be a process which in theory could be used to monitor the communications of american citizens under the guise of spying on terrorists. it also continues to ensure that any communication originating in the united states caught in the fisa process is minimized. now, what does that mean? it means it's handled in a way that american commu
Dec 27, 2012 12:00pm PST
, mitch mcconnell. when that happens we'll go live to the senate floor but a spokesman for john boehner says senator reid should talk less and legislate more. the house passed legislation to avoid the fiscal cliff. senate democrats have not. if the president and lawmakers cannot reach a deal in the next five days, automatic tax hikes and major spending cuts are set to kick in and economists warn that could trigger another recession. what else are we hearing from democrats on the hill? >> trace, very interesting comments from vice president joe biden up here for an unrelated matter about the fiscal cliff today. he says, essentially he was asked what do you think will pass? he said if you tell me what would attract republican support, i can tell you what would pass. if asked if he was optimistic, he said he was neither optimistic or pessimistic but was going back to talk to the president. the senate majority leader sounded frustrated with house republican leadership. >> american people i don't think understand the house of representatives is operating out the house of representatives. it'
Dec 28, 2012 12:00pm EST
have to have that first vote done in a timely way so that both senator reid and senator mcconnell can leave to have the designated meeting with president obama. mr. cochran: mr. president, let me join with the senator from maryland in commending all senators for the expeditious way we've been able to move this bill but particularly the chairwoman herself, who's provided strong leadership, capable leadership, fairness, a sense of fairness for all senators, and i thank her for the honor of serving with her on this committee. the presiding officer: under the previous order, the senate senatorses can attend the weekly caucus meetings. this morning they approve and extension of the farm intelligence v it allows the government to continue intercepting overseas communication. it extends legal immunity phone companies that help the government wiretap the domestic phone calls. president obama plans to sign the bill. when the senate is back we are expecting senators to continued work on the $60 billion hurricane sandy relief package. negotiations continue on avoiding the so-called fiscal cliff.